Gittens scored a pair of threes early that helped turn the tide in the first half, while also drawing assignment to defend New Mexico State's leader Zach Lofton. Hearlihy hit two free throws at the end of regulation to force overtime. And Hill could not be stopped in overtime as Seattle University men's basketball completed a 73-63 overtime win over Western Athletic Conference leading New Mexico State Saturday afternoon at KeyArena.
"What a great day for Seattle U and for our basketball program," said Head Coach Jim Hayford. "Today feels good because it was against a quality opponent. We have a lot of respect for our opponent, but tonight the story is our seniors. It's the commitment they made a year ago when they came and they trusted their senior year to this program."
The Redhawks move to 19-9 on the year, setting a new wins record during its modern-day Division I era. Seattle U also improves to 8-3 in WAC play, keeping in pace for second place in the league standings.
A 43-39 Seattle U lead with 12:08 to play would turn into a 10-point advantage, 49-39, with 7:45 to play as the Redhawks' defense held the Aggies scoreless for nearly five minutes, while also forcing six turnovers in the stretch.
But Lofton, who had just seven first-half points, and one three pointer to that point in the second half, came alive. He would go on to score 11 points in the midst of a 13-4 Aggie run that made it a one-point ball game, 53-52 with 3:37 to play.
Lofton's fifth three of the half would put the Aggies on top, 57-55, with 1:19 remaining. But following empty trips for both teams, Hearlihy was fouled, and calmly drained two free throws to tie the score with nine seconds remaining.
Lofton took a long three as time expired, but it would not fall and the teams headed into overtime.
Hearlihy would hit a three on the first OT possession and the Redhawks would never trail again. Hill then took over, scoring the next nine string Redhawk points as Lofton lost the touch he had discovered late in the second half.
Seattle U hit six straight free throws in the final 40 seconds to seal the 10-point victory - their first over NMSU since the 2014-15 season.
Hill finished with a team-high 24 points on 9-of-19 shooting from the field and 5-of-5 from the free-throw line. Healthy added 19 points, Morgan Means chipped in nine off the bench and Gittens added eight. Aaron Menzies finished with a game-high 14 rebounds to go along with seven points and two blocks.
Lofton led NMSU (22-5, 9-2 WAC) with 26 points and 12 boards. No other Aggie scored in double figures as the WAC leader lost for the second straight outing.
The Redhawks hit the road for their final three regular-season games, beginning Thursday, Feb. 22 at Grand Canyon. The game will air live on ESPN3 and can be heard live on KTTH 770 AM.